Top Picks from Tabletop

By alexandra

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High-end tabletop products conjure up images of festive dinners, fun parties and gorgeous gatherings. It’s no wonder we are fans. Last week we headed to 41 Madison for their Tabletop Show.  We came away with some fun facts and a huge wish list of items we’d like to snag once they hit the shelves.

First up, we got a taste of Sweden, with a “trip” to Design House Stockholm. One of the stand-outs at this showroom was the Cobalt Collection by Catharina Kippel. With a nautical vibe and a deep ocean blue, these pieces are perfect for use in classic summer homes. We learned that Cobalt-based blue pigments have been used since ancient times for jewelry and paints, and to impart a distinctive blue tint to glass and ceramics. Kippel’s line is indeed distinctive, made using centuries’ old techniques. The cobalt blue designs were hand-painted in three layers on slightly transparent bone china.

Jugs from the Cobalt Collection

Another favorite from the company is the Barbara Carafe.  Designed to hold wine, water or even flowers, the piece boasts a complementary crystal ball, which adds a hint of color to any table.  The ball can be used as a stopper, or can cleverly nestle at the bottom of the vase.

The Barbara Carafe

Next up, we checked out Lenox, where we found a trove of great products.  The company has a rich history. Its displays were both classic and au courant.  As things continue to heat up in the Republican primaries, it was entertaining to see a replica of an official Reagan presidential table setting. The first thing guests encountered upon entering the showroom, it featured the same style tableware used during the Reagan presidency.  No surprise the china Lenox produced for Reagan boasts a punchy red hue—Nancy Reagan’s signature color. According to Lenox, “Between 1918 and the present, six presidents have commissioned Lenox to issue new state services.”

The closest we will probably ever get to a State Dinner

A closeup shot of the Reagan china

From the political to the Mad Men era-inspired, retro-silhouetted champagne glasses from Kate Spade for Lenox next caught our eye. They were adorned with delicate gold dots that mimic the effervescence of bubbly. The company also showed off its ladylike aesthetic with mugs that had similar period motifs.

Finally, we stumbled across an avant-garde new line by a talented young ceramist.  Jono Pandolfi for Lenox is a quietly chic collection in subdued colors. Pandolfi is a true artisan, handcrafting much of his work in his design studio in New Jersey. His pieces can be found in some of the most well regarded restaurants, as well as in the Museum of Modern Art in NYC.  His impressive résumé doesn’t end there.  Pandolfi also instructs in the product design department of Parsons School of Design.

Jono Pandolfi's display in Lenox

An inviting tablescape from Jono Pandolfi

An example of the rich hues in Pandolfi's collection

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